Giving users explicit choice is generally well-intentioned, but there’s an art to balancing autonomy and clarity. In attempting to represent the full range of options available, designers often think they’re being thoughtful and transparent, when in reality most users neither care for nor want the ‘additional fluff.’
Decision fatigue occurs when users are presented with too much information, or too many options, all at once. It is a real and pervasive consequence of poor UX, and negatively impacts the usability of any product/service/experience.
Unfortunately, products/services/experiences with an overbearing amount of options are all too prevalent. Perhaps because we’re used to interacting with many of them on a day to day basis, we overlook the fact that they could still be made simpler and more efficient.
As UX designer Miklos Philips writes on TopTal,
“Today, we’re still looking at two-dimensional screens and mostly use keyboards and mice for input; devices designed for interaction methods that were optimized for computers, not humans… It’s as if we’re using interaction models from the Flintstones’ era in a Jetsons’ world; they still rely on a lot of interaction from users (input) to move to the next step and display useful information (output).”
Consider the Adobe Suite for instance, which, according to the Reddit community consensus, performs surprisingly poorly in usability for a set of design tools.
What if instead Photoshop was able to suggest the right tool, at the right time, based on…